Remote Work Focus Tips — My work / laundry balance 💻 🧺

by Rebecca Sherman

When COVID-19 abruptly yanked workers out of their offices, many found their new virtual workplaces lacked a key ingredient that brought them happiness at work: face-to-face interactions with other people.

Alley was a fully remote company before COVID, so when the pandemic hit, I didn’t have a physical workplace to miss. Instead, I found I was wistful for face-to-face conferences, networking, and knowledge sharing events, which used to get me out of my home office and kept me inspired.

You can imagine my excitement when event organizers began offering virtual options, where I could still learn new ideas and meet new people. You can also imagine my disappointment and surprise when, after I logged onto my first event, I struggled to engage.

How could I focus on a webinar while constantly tempted to answer slack messages and check email? How could I resist the temptation to multitask, knowing my two preschool-age kiddos would soon arrive home like two mini whirling dervishes?

This discovery is just in time too, because I recently started an online course (thanks to Alley’s commitment to, and funding for, professional development) which is heavily video-based. The videos don’t require me to be “camera-on” or to interact with others, but they do require me to pay careful attention and absorb the content. I’ve found that folding laundry while watching the videos allows me to keep my hands busy, avoid computer-based distractions, and carve out uninterrupted time to focus on the material.

What techniques do you use to stay focused, motivated, and connected to your co-workers? Got something that tops doing the laundry? Bring it! We just might add it to this post.

Now, where is that other sock? 🧦

Originally published at on November 11, 2020.

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